Traffic Management Point (road closures) FAQs
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Traffic Management Point (road closures) FAQs

1. What is a Traffic Management Point? 
2. When are TMPs set up? 
3. What if I need to get in to check to see if someone is OK?
4. Who decides on and manages TMPs?
5. What are the different levels of access?
6. How do I know what level I come under?
7. Are residents allowed in?
8. What if I need to get in to check my animals / farming property?
9. How can I be considered for access?
10. How / where do I get a wristband?
11. What if I do not have any ID?
12. How do I find out if a road is closed? 

1. What is a Traffic Management Point (TMP)?

Traffic Management Points (TMPs) are temporary road closures set up during an emergency. They are used to protect the community and emergency services personnel when there is potential danger nearby.

TMPs can have various access levels depending on the severity and stage of the emergency. 

2. When are Traffic Management Points set up?

TMPs may be set up during emergencies including:

  • a fire or flood
  • dangerous trees or debris on the road
  • destruction or damage to roads or other critical infrastructure like bridges.


3. What if I need to get in to check to see if someone is OK?

During an incident, roads may need to be temporarily closed so that emergency services can respond.
Following a fire, flood, storm or other emergency, emergency services will need to assess the affected area and subsequent damage and danger.

If you are concerned about the welfare of a family member, friend or relative during in an emergency, you can contact the Department of Human Services. This will assist emergency services in their efforts to locate missing people.

The Red Cross database ‘Register, Find, Reunite’ may help you locate your loved one. You can register to be on this database by going to www.register.redcross.org.au

For many reasons it can be distressing for residents to be kept out of their community, however, it is important that trained responders are the first to enter and area affected by an emergency to assess the damage and manage the clean-up in a safe and controlled environment. This will reduce any further threat to lives and property. Even when an emergency has passed, there can be many dangers. For instance, when a fire has been called under control, emergency services will need to check for hot spots and smouldering trees which may be at risk of falling or reigniting a fire.

After a storm, trees and other debris are often found to be blocking roads and need to be removed. Emergency services and supporting agencies work as quickly as possible to clean up areas affected by an emergency and to make them safe for the public to re-enter.

4. Who decides on and manages TMPs?

A person, called an Incident Controller, decides on where to establish a TMP in consultation with various emergency service personnel and people who know the area.
You will usually see police officers managing road closures, however this responsibility can be delegated to emergency personnel such as firefighters or SES personnel.

5. What are the different levels of access?

There are different levels of access, depending on the severity of an emergency. These levels have been established with the safety of the community and emergency service personnel in mind.

  • No entry (A): Emergency services only access
  • Restricted access (B): Essential services assessment
  • Authorised access (C): Residents, recovery services, media
  • Authorised access (D): Others authorised eg. employees
  • Road open

For further information about the circumstances and groups of people who may be permitted access at each level, see ‘How do I know what level I come under?’

6. How do I know what level I come under?

Residents may be allowed to enter their property at Level B depending on the circumstances. Level C permits residents to return to their homes. For more details, see below:

No entry (A): Emergency services only access

  • The only people permitted entry at an Emergency Services Only Access, without specific authority of the Incident Controller or who control has been delegated to, will be those who are responding emergency service personnel engaged in response operations on emergency service vehicles. This includes agency fire fighting vehicles and vehicles used by fire agency personnel for the management of fire fighting operations (whether the vehicle is owned or leased by the fire agency or privately owned by CFA personnel). CFA personnel travelling in privately owned vehicles must provide a formal CFA identification card.
  • CFA/DEPI or Networked Emergency Organisations (NEO) contractors are also permitted access at this time on production of relevant identification. Such contractors may be involved in the delivery of machinery or maintenance thereof. Private fire-fighting equipment must have the appropriate yellow CFA issued vehicle sticker, whilst other contractors approved for access past a TMP must have a fluorescent pink sticker issued for the relevant fire ground by the Incident Controller or their delegate.
  • The Incident Controller or delegate may determine access for non–fire agency personnel (eg. residents, DEPI animal welfare staff, emergency or essential services) where it is deemed appropriate in the circumstances. In this case, such access may require specific conditions to be met, such as escort by appropriate fire agency personnel.
  • At a TMP, Victoria Police, CFA, DEPI, MFB and SES personnel all have an operational discretion to implement an Emergency Services Only Access road closure i.e. to turn an open road into no entry. This would be dependent on the prevailing conditions at the time and the need for safety. In the event of this type of decision being made, the relevant TMP personnel are to convey notice of their actions and reasons for such decision to the incident controller or their delegate as soon as practicable.

    Restricted access (B): Essential services assessment

    The Incident Controller, or delegate, may authorise a TMP to be classified or reclassified as Restricted Access – B.
  • Restricted Access – B permits access of an Access Safety Assessment Team (ASAT) to conduct an assessment of roads and infrastructure, within an area specified by the Incident Controller or delegate. This will enable essential services, local council and VicRoads to identify areas that may present further hazards and where work will be required. This access level is a transitional level prior to Authorised Access C and unless exceptional circumstances exist, it is not intended that major work be carried out at this time.
  • The ASAT may consist of road authority and essential service personnel as determined by the Incident Controller or delegate.
     
  • Restricted Access – B also permits access to services included at Emergency Services Only Access.
  • The Incident Controller or delegate may determine access for non–fire agency personnel (eg. residents, DEPI animal welfare staff, emergency or essential services) where it is deemed appropriate in the circumstances. In this case, such access may require specific conditions to be met, such as escort by appropriate fire or relevant responder agency personnel.
  • Authorised access (C): Residents, recovery services, media
     
  • The Incident Controller or delegate may authorise a TMP to be classified as Authorised Access – C. Only persons or groups authorised by the Incident Controller or delegate may pass an Authorised Access – C TMP. The Incident Controller’s or delegate’s considerations for such access will include (but are not limited to):
    • The safety of those who wish to enter and of the emergency service personnel working within the incident area;
    • the purpose for which they need to pass the TMP;
    • the location(s) to which they wish to travel;
    • the time of the day and the current and forecast fire conditions;
    • the current road conditions; and
    • the expected fire and road conditions.
       
  • Authorised Access – C permits access by the following:
     
    • residents returning to their homes;
    • emergency and essential services crews;
    • individuals or groups delivering relief and aid to residents and to animals;
    • DEPI staff or approved vets to facilitate the treatment and humane destruction of injured animals;
    • accredited media; and
    • persons permitted access at Restricted Access – B
       
  • Persons seeking access through an Authorised Access – C TMP, will need to provide identification (or authorising wristband) and justification for such access (eg. Resident returning home, owner of business in affected area). 

Authorised access (D): Others authorised eg. employees

  • The Incident Controller or delegate may authorise a TMP to be classified as Authorised Access – D. This level authorises access for employees and other groups as specified by the Incident Controller or delegate for example an authorised officer of the relevant road authority. It will enable the relevant road authority (in most cases either VicRoads or the local municipality) to make safe any road hazards or potential hazards.
  • This level is seen as a transitional level from the Incident Controller to the relevant road authority prior to the removal of the TMP and full opening of the road to the public. In cases where the road has been rehabilitated to the satisfaction of the authorised officer of the relevant road authority, the road may be opened to the public at this time.
  • Only persons or groups authorised by the relevant road authority may pass an Authorised Access – D road closure. The authorised officer or delegate’s considerations for such access will include (but are not limited to):
    • the purpose for which they need to pass the TMP;
    • the location(s) to which they wish to travel;
    • the time of the day and the current weather conditions; and,
    • the current and/or expected road conditions.
  • Authorised Access – D permits access by the following:
    • people permitted access at Authorised Access – C
    • other people authorised, such as employees of businesses within the affected area.
       
  • Persons seeking access through an Authorised Access – D TMP, will need to provide identification (or authorising wristband) and justification for such access.

Road open:

  • When the road owner is satisfied that the road safe is again, they will declare the road open.
  • The public will be notified that the road is open through websites, the media, and people on the ground.


7. Are residents allowed in?

Residents are generally permitted access at level C.

At Level B, recent changes to TMP guidelines mean that people such as farmers, DEPI animal welfare staff and / or other supporting personnel may obtain early direct access or access under escort providing there are sufficient resources and where it is safe and appropriate to do so.

Farmers provided with early access need to meet minimum safety requirements including appropriate clothing, communications devices, vehicles and equipment. Access for bee keepers and others will also be considered.

For more information on how the guidelines have been enhanced see ‘What are the changes to the enhanced guidelines for farmers and agricultural business owners?

8. What if I need to get in to check my animals / farming property?

It is recognised that farmers in particular, need to access their properties as soon as possible for a range of reasons, including to check on stock, fences and other damage to their farms which are their business and source of income.

While safety will always remain the number one priority for emergency services, this summer there will be a renewed commitment to reduce the impact of emergencies on communities and emergency services and other agencies and industries are working together to improve access following an emergency.

Access arrangements have been enhanced to provide early access when it is safe and appropriate.

Farmers and business owners can expect more consideration of local knowledge in the development of traffic management plans to prioritise the assessment and re-opening of roads.

Incident Traffic Management Plans will be in place to implement these arrangements and help manage re-entry to rural properties as soon as possible.

Recent enhancements to TMP guidelines mean that people such as farmers, DEPI animal welfare staff and / or other supporting personnel may also be considered for early access or under an escort providing there are sufficient resources and where it is safe and appropriate to do so. Farmers provided with early access are likely to be required to meet minimum safety requirements including appropriate clothing, communications devices, vehicles and equipment. Access for bee keepers and others will also be considered.

For more information on how the guidelines have been enhanced see ‘What are the changes to the enhanced guidelines for farmers and agricultural business owners?

9. How can I be considered for access?

People seeking access through a level C TMP, will need to provide identification and an authorising wristband.

You will also need to provide justification for access. Eg. Resident returning home or owner of a business in the affected area.

For more information on who specifically will be considered under the various levels see ‘How do I know what level I come under?

During an emergency, please contact your local council to find out where you can go to be considered for TMP access. To find your local council, including their contact details, visit www.dtpli.vic.gov.au/local-government/find-your-local-council.

Wristbands may also be available at recovery centres which are temporarily set up to assist affected residents. These are managed by DHS. To find the location of your closest relief and/or recovery centre, go to www.recovery.vic.gov.au or phone the Victorian Emergency Recovery Information Line on 1300 799 232. Please take all relevant identification or paperwork to ensure you can be considered for access and to make the process as efficient as possible for yourself, others trying to gain access and those working in the centre who are a part of the emergency response and recovery efforts.
If you do not have ID see What if I do not have any ID? 

10. How / where do I get a wristband?

You can obtain a wristband from a recovery centre which may be temporarily set up to assist residents displaced or affected by an emergency.

To find the location of your closest recovery centre, visit www.recovery.vic.gov.au or phone the Victorian Emergency Recovery Information Line on 1300 799 232.
You can also get in touch with your local council to see what support is being offered in your area. To find your local council, including their contact details, visit www.dtpli.vic.gov.au/local-government/find-your-local-council

11. What if I do not have any ID?

If you don't have any ID, please attend at a designated Relief Centre, contact your local council or nearest police station to find out your options for verifying your identify.
This may include looking you up on the electoral roll.

You may also wish to contact family or friends to find out whether they have any records or copies of documentation for you which may assist in this process.
You can find your local council, including their contact details, by visiting www.dtpli.vic.gov.au/local-government/find-your-local-council. To find details of your nearest police station, visit www.police.vic.gov.au

12. How do I find out if a road is closed?

You can find out which roads are closed in real time either online or via a smart phones.

Go to the VicTraffic website at www.traffic.vicroads.vic.gov.au and/or download the VicTraffic free app. Alerts will also be available on Twitter.
People without internet access can call VicRoads Traffic Management Centre 24 hours a day, 365 days a year on 13 11 70. This number can also be used to report a fault, hazard or problem on the roads.

Community information and warnings will also provide information about traffic management point access levels.

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